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REACHING OUT WITH UNIVERSAL PARENTAL SUPPORT

Doktorsavhandling
Författare Karin Wallgren Thorslund
Datum för examination 2019-05-24
Opponent at public defense Professor Anna Sarkadi
ISBN 978-91-7833-431-5
Förlag Göteborgs universitet
Förlagsort Göteborg
Publiceringsår 2019
Publicerad vid Psykologiska institutionen
Språk en
Länkar hdl.handle.net/2077/59898
Ämnesord Universal prevention, Promotion, Parenting, Parental support, Parental engagement, Adolescence, Adolescent mental health, Family services
Ämneskategorier Psykologi

Sammanfattning

The overarching aim of this thesis was to explore the general interest in universal parental support, the circumstances under which this interest is stronger, and how universal support groups for parents of adolescents could be developed according to those parents’ perceived needs. Study I examined parents´ interest in municipal parental support. The results showed that mothers were more interested than fathers in all forms of parental support except a webpage, and that frequent use of the Internet as a source of parenting information was associated with high interest in parental support. Study II explored interest in existing and possible uni-versal parental support in parents of adolescents compared with parents of younger children. About 82% of the parents of adolescents inter-viewed considered universal parental support most important during the child’s adolescence. There was substantial interest, in most forms of support. Despite their interest, parents had limited awareness of available support. Study III explored the factors associated with interest in univer-sal parental support and found it was linked to parents’ own anxious mood, lower perceived parental capacity, perception of their child as having psychiatric problems, perception of their adolescents’ openness about things, and perception of their adolescent’s overall difficulties in daily life due to psychiatric symptoms. Study IV explored what kind of support parents of adolescents’ request from universal parent support groups and what practical requirements would enable parents to partici-pate. Parents could give each other emotional support and develop better parenting skills together. Reaching out with support universally requires that various information channels be utilized to reach out to all parents regardless of gender and social status, and various forms of support be offered. The Internet is an important but challenging information chan-nel for reaching out to parents, especially fathers. Supports should be developed that are targeted to parents of adolescents, tailored to their needs, and well-advertised. Schools are important arenas for offering universal parental supports such as support groups moderated by trained professionals. Lighter support forms should be accompanied by more resource-demanding forms of support. to prevent increasing inequalities between parents with different social situations.

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